Tips for Teaching Time-Telling

In a world of digital everything (including clocks), time-telling seems to be a skill that is practiced less and less. Giving your children a good foundation for telling time will ensure that they grow up knowing how to read the clock.

Below are some tips that you can use while teaching your child how to tell time.

Time Telling

Some Tips

Time Step 2

Photo Credit: The Thrifty Turtle

Time Step 4

Photo Credit: Learning Ideas Grades K–-8

  • Step 1

    Let your child pick out a watch with their favorite characters. Ask them to tell you what time it is using their new watch so that they can practice time-telling in a fun way.

  • Step 2

    Create clocks around your house that make time-telling more enjoyable, such as this flower petal clock.

  • Step 3

    Help children understand the concept of time by simply having them brainstorm activities that take certain amounts of time. For instance, what takes 1 minute? 30 minutes? 1 hour?

  • Step 4

    Have your children help you to create a practice clock. Glue clock numbers to a paper plate. Then using a thumbtack, attach the hour and minute hands to the plate so that you and your child can practice identifying different times. To make the clock even more fun to practice with, use colors, shapes, and themes that interest your child. For instance, use baseballs as numbers and baseball bats as the hour and minute hands.

  • Step 5

    Have your child list out important times during the day (snack time, nap time, play time, dinner time, bed time, etc.). Then, on a practice clock let them turn to those times.

  • Step 6

    Reward your children for telling time correctly. For instance, if they correctly identify playtime on the clock, give them an extra 5 minutes to play. Or if they correctly identify snack time, give them a special treat.

  • Step 7

    Have your children keep you “on time.” Give them the responsibility one day to alert you when it’s time for church, class, snack time, etc. If they keep you “on time,” they get a reward.